Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Mini-Reviews: April 2018

Look at me, moving right along with these mini-reviews.
Sorry, now I have that song stuck in my head. AS I WAS SAYING

Look at me, moving right along with these mini-reviews. At this rate, I may even finish reviewing 2018 books before 2020. Crazy talk? Maybe but we shall see.

April was apparently a good month for me, since 2 of my favorite reads from 2018 happened that month, so that's swell. Of course, that also means I sort of already did a mini-review for them. Like just a couple days ago. I suppose I didn't think these posts through entirely. My bad. So there will be some repetition here. I guess...feel free to skim a bit? Or I mean, you're free to do that whenever. How would I even stop you? I'm not going to be forcing quizzes to make sure you did the reading. That's a silly idea, why would you even suggest it?

This post is getting away from me, so why don't we dive into the mini-reviews? Great idea, good job, me.

The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah
I won this book from Book Riot and I honestly can't remember why because I got it and then it sat on my shelf for a while. As you do. The main character, Ivo, is in hospice care, slowly wasting away with no visitors except the hospice nurses. To keep his mind sharp, one of the nurses encourages him to play a game where he goes through the alphabet naming a body part and a memory to go along with it. And thus we learn the story of Ivo's younger life, how he ended up where he is, what happened with his love Mia, and why he is alone, mostly due to a series self-destructive decisions. It is a depressing book. I guess, it could have been more depressing except a lot of the characters (Ivo, his friends, his sister) are pretty unlikeable so while I'm not saying you want him to be in pain and dying, it also doesn't feel like grief porn. This wasn't a cold uncaring world dumping on this guy, but a guy who regrets making a lot of bad choices. Would he regret them if he wasn't dying? Probably not. So the book was fine. Not great, but not terrible. I don't remember that much about it, but I'm pretty sure it didn't make me cry, despite the depressing nature. And if you're curious, yes I DID cry over Opportunity, the Mars rover "dying", so that's all it could take to get me to cry.
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Texts from Jane Eyre by Daniel Mallory Ortberg
This book was so funny. So great and nerdy and a quick read. When I was writing about it for my best of 2018 reads post, I skimmed through it again to get a feel. And then decided "I should just read this again because it's SO GOOD". And then I did. It was a good choice. It is a hilarious collection of what it would be like if various characters and literary figures could text each other, usually with one of them being a hot mess of a person and the other playing the straight man. And sure, that could get a little repetitive but also, shut up, it's funny every time.
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Relish: My Life in the Kitchen by Lucy Knisley
Oh look, another favorite read of 2018. It's a memoir about food. Memoirs are fun, food is GREAT. And Knisley loves food. Her mom was a chef (is a chef? I dunno what her mom is up to these days) so she grew up appreciating food. I was going to say "grew up around food" but like...yeah. We all did. Or else we starved. Anyway, graphic memoir about growing up and food and there are even some recipes and I'm getting hungry thinking about it and also should I stop writing this and reread this book right now? Yes, maybe.* That sounds like a good idea. Sorry, this wasn't helpful. But read it, how bout that?
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*Fact: I did exactly that and thus it took me basically an extra day+ to finish this post. Worth it.

Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops by Jen Campbell

This was fun and I’m pretty sure I read the entire thing in one sitting while hanging out at a sbux. It is about, surprise, surprise, weird things that customers say in bookstores. It’s short and sweet and a very quick read, so reading it in one sitting isn’t actually that impressive but whatever. ALSO the book contains a submission from a certain book blogger and all around awesome person Emily (As the Crowe Flies and Reads) so you know this book is Quality.
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